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Here are the 15 most recent reviews submitted

Toast16 , attached to 1985-04-06 Permalink
This show was amazing!!
Early Phish at their greatest!!!! The quality of this show is amazing too!! And a TWO SONG SECOND SET!!! Holy Shit.
Let me start with the first set.

It starts out with an I AM HYDROGEN. What!!! To open a show!! I doubt you'll see stuff like that nowadays. And it was the debut of it too! WOW!!

Next is DON'T WANT YOU NO MORE. What an instrumental!! Page's playing is on point and I love the outro jam that the boys play after this one.

After that is CITIES. I love the Talking Heads, and I love Phish so this song is perfect. Trey's guitar is absolutely sublime on this one. Loving this shit so far.

Next is WILD CHILD. Wow! Phish covering Lou Reed!! Page is the real Wild Child on this song, as his playing is wonderful.
This is turning out to be the best first set I have ever listened to.

The song after that is SLAVE TO THE TRAFFIC LIGHT. Damn! I am turning into a slave to this band because this jam was so good, it rocked my socks off!!

Next is a JAM. Wow!! How often are Jams played? Well I just listened to a wonderful progressive one and it was a killer. The whole band is on point.

Next up is Alumni Blues. I was feeling sad because of the name but this song is amazing.

Then I fell asleep.

But you should get this. Best show of all time
Score: 0
NickSalv , attached to 1997-11-26 Permalink
NickSalv Amazing stuff, obviously. 11/26 is a standard above-avg Fall '97 show. Though, I think I would give this one 4/5 stars, especially when looking at the EASY 5-STAR shows surrounding it (Hamptons, NC, Worcester). I don't feel a need to give a full review here, as quite a few others have already touched on mostly everything from this show, so just some quick notes for those skimming through...

The Tweeze opener is big but doesn't sit as high as the other great ones from that tour (11/17, 12/6). Rather, I think it's on par with the Island Tour 4/4 opener - tons of sick funk morphing then growing into big arena rock and settling into stop/start or space. Perfect opener, but nothing out of the ordinary for the tour. Some more great funk in Gumbo, of course, but a smaller serving than the big bowls from the summer. Always love McGrupp; Melt is nice, pretty average though, similar to the Hampton take; Taste is intense, as was the case for the entire year with the tune. 2nd set means MORE FUNK in 2001>Cities, mix of very tight then loose playing. A bit more fun for the crowd with YaMar>Punch. Caspian serves as the big arena rocker to counter the opening rock from Tweeze, bringing the show closer to its end. Goofiness ensues with the RockyHeart mashup. Reprise fire. Cavern is unusual as well, as it features an alternate lyrics/hard rock section and an ATC tease. Definitely a fun(ky) & rocking show, but I'd still give it 4/5 (which isn't really a huge step down, considering I wouldn't give any show from the tour less than 4 stars / maaaybe the opener 11/13 which still has a Top 5 Stash all time, or 12/5 but even that one had a unique 2nd set)...

What I left out above and what I mostly wanted to point out with this post, however, was the lack of mention of Character Zero in the Noteworthy Jams section. TBH, that is the biggest "highlight" of the night to take away; that is, this is the unique marker for this show. Lots of standard/avg Fall '97 material throughout the show, no question, but nothing they haven't done before in that tour or months leading up to it. This is the standout tune that people should recognize from this show, as it's the most unique version to date. I'm barring those versions that feature guests (Gullotti, Perazzo, Grippo, etc) because I wouldn't say those break far from the tune proper. Now, this one doesn't go completely Type 2, but it definitely stretches a bit and tries to break free from the pre-97 shackles.

To sum it up: Char0 starts with a couple minutes of space almost like they'd planned on rocketing into 2001 before Trey starts up; I'd say the rocking section goes faaar harder than some other Zero's from the tour; then there's a segment at about 13min where they bring down the heat on a lower-key groove while Trey uses his pitch shifter(?); they soon lock into a unique hard-rock riff (~15min) and ride it for a few min (oddly similar to Foxey Lady, no? am i the only one? lots of Jimi in Trey's soul during those shows); MORE FYF ROCK & WAH ACTION, never gets old for me; Page on the organ; Trey starts adding eerie looping effects as Mike puts this one to sleep with some odd basslines. Finally, Fishman---->>>> into 2001 with a very solid segue. I know it's not a top 15, or maybe even top 20?, jam from the tour. I just wanted to make notice of this standout version just to give a bit more credit to the band's ability in that period to turn ANY song upside down/inside out during that period (as if more credit is actually needed, CHYA RIGHT). Bet you never thought anyone would get this excited about Zero.....

Welp, there's my two cents. Clear your schedule for the next couple weeks, download the whole tour ASAP, let it envelope your entire life/being/soul, dwell on it, dwell in it, dwell around it, REFLECT, rinse, repeat, reverse, rewind, recalibrate, rejuvenate, TRANSCEND . . . . . .
Score: 0
cmg348 , attached to 2014-07-25 Permalink
cmg348 1. This CDT is destined to remain overshadowed by the epic version from 7/13, but—believe me—it squarely holds its own with the latter, 7/10/99, IT, etc. Definitely give it a listen.

2. I haven't yet re-listened myself, but at the show I had the very distinct feeling that this Reba is the tits. I didn't hear any flubs during the composed section (a benefit of its frequent play this tour, I imagine), and the jam is delicate and moving, with a brilliant, uplifting peak.

3. Fuego->Twist->Circus is definitely worth a listen—or two, or three...—as well.

3/5 on the whole.
Score: 0
NiccuIus , attached to 2014-07-27 Permalink
i started touring in the late 90's. MPP2 was my 86. i have had tears in my eye everytime I think about 7/27 or look at the setlist. I have always wanted a seguefest show like that. I have seen some amazing shows in my time but none have ever made me tear up days after. This show is in the 1.0 conversation, not just best of 3.0. not saying the show is the best ever, just saying it deserves to be in some conversations. not only did we get those segues, the HYHU bit, in my opinion, was one of the best and funniest things they have ever done. Really cool for me cause I actually saw the atrocity that was Jennifer Dances in 1999. really glad I was there for that historic show.
Score: 1
malachi , attached to 2014-07-27 Permalink
malachi This show has it all. It's a testament to who these guys are creatively and the passion they have for what they have chosen as their life's work. I really wish the mainstream media followed Phish the way they follow the NFL so we could have a few post show interviews here. Like did they plan this out? Did they write out the setlist for the second set or was the whole thing spontaneous? Was this a response to my continued comments about the setlists getting unwarranted segues?

Reviewing this show goes like this. First set: Awesome, way to go they killed it. Second set: Top 10: All Time Sets. Technically it wasn't perfect and there were a few moments where someone was on the wrong key, but the energy was outstanding. It was also funny. In order to make me say this set is one of the best, I have to laugh. Fish yelled, "MY DONG," in Jennifer Dances. Brilliantly funny. Bravo Fish. To me the verbal exchange that led into 'I Been Around' was the icing on the cake. Heartwarming, electric, and left me with a smile on my face, this show is an instant classic.
Score: 1
Piper72 , attached to 1998-07-29 Permalink
Piper72 I didn't remember that I was at this very show, but I did remember a show in the late '90s where I met Mike for the first time; a small crowd formed around him as he pulled up a few feet away from me and stopped. I remember looking in his eyes and thinking of the line "His eyes were clear and pure/but his mind was so deranged" as that seemed to describe him perfectly: he was the essence of calm, holding multiple conversations at once and answering (albeit vaguely) the multiple fan queries. All I was able to get in was "Have a good show, Mike!" and a pat on his back as he drove away (which I hope he wasn't weirded out by).
A little later, I'm at my pavilion seats with whoever I was with at the time, the weather is gorgeous, and they open with this Gin. Being a phan about five years in at this time, I was familiar with some live versions of it, and was enjoying the groove and the nice arpeggiated interplay between Trey and Page after the sung verses and refrain.
Then-WHOA. What's happening. The tempo increases and the band LOCKS IN. They turn robo-funk, right before our eyes. Fish throws in a wood block, Trey strips away all but up-down muting, Page gets atmospheric with his keys, and Mike starts dropping this delay-bombs that both space out and propel the music. We are entering trans-dimensional space here, and dancing like complete FOOLS the entire time. The whole time I am amazed how four people can act as one, turning the music inside out and shifting on a dime. When Trey starts his porno-funk and Page adds his Hammond bursts, it gets unreal. THEN MIKE. MIKE MIKE MIKE! Tight, up/down octave funk slap. Fish switches to ride. Pure release, not from a melodic but a rhythmic tension. They've been tweaking this in practice, and have unleashed IT on us, whatever IT is. A perfection crafted from the hundreds of jams preceding. And then Trey announces the end with the re-introduction of the "theme" and we're out, back to earth. A ridiculous, sloppy, joyous ending (crash-landing) helps reinforce the reminder of both the journey, and the return.
The rest of the show is a blur, but that moment stands out in my mind. And feeling the direct human connection between me and one of my musical heroes immediately preceding that, just makes it that much more special. It was so direct, cause seeming to manifest directly to effect, that I even found myself thinking, "Did I do that??" But, in hindsight, I realized WE did that. The band was ready to deliver, and the crowd receive. And it wasn't till much later, finding the video on YouTube under "Best Gin Ever?" and confirming it by the discovery of the ticket stub from that very show, that I was able to relive that miraculous moment.
And if you haven't listened to the show, get yourself to or, or at least find that YouTube video. You will NOT be disappointed.
Score: 0
zwyts , attached to 2014-07-27 Permalink
The music itself is superlative. This show absolutely nailed everything we chase in a show. Bustouts, setlist diversity, flow, segues, risk taking, and yes even jamming. When the dust settles, the level of musicianship and improv and jamming will be regarded as commensurate to some of their finest work.

But to me, this experience was more about how it made me feel. And it is one of the most honest concerts I have ever witnessed by any band. Like season 4 of The Wire honest. The kind of honesty that packs the power of a sucker punch. Fishman standing there "naked" in front of 20k people with no earthly clue what he was going to do next. It was one of the least pretentious moments one could ever encounter, and encapsulated the whole night.

Fee was the 1st Phish song I ever heard. Back in my dorm room in 1990. I could easily track this show to my personal journey over the last 25 years. It didn't just create a feeling of nostalgia, but I actually felt those same feelings I felt years ago. That elusive "gold ring down inside" that always slips away, I was able to grasp it, even if just for a couple hours.

But nostalgia, and old feelings aside, more than anything this show taught me how to live and be in the moment. More than any yogi or meditation book or buddhist monk or the most expensive shrink could. Because I have never seen 4 guys more present and in the moment than Phish that night.
Score: 2
bag_it_tag_it , attached to 2014-07-27 Permalink
I am still picking my jaw up off the floor. I am so happy and feel so blessed to have been in attendance for what was possibly the best concert of any genre any band, any etc that i have ever been to. When the band starts off the first set with a fee, has an amazing first set, and ends it with a yem..... you know your in for it.... That second set!!!! I live for great segues in progessive and jam band music.. The segues in and out of that tweezer were amazing!!! Catapult, I been around, Saw it again, And THE BEST JENNIFER DANCES... Listen to what fish says .. i believe there is a "jennifer dances my dong" in there.. This show had a very old school feel to it.. This is what it must have been like to see phish in the 90's.... Shows like this is why i love our band.... shows like this are why i tour.... shows like this are why all my free time and money go to phish... Our band had a great time on stage and the music from that night reflects it. I dont know what else to say other than THANK YOU PHISH ... I
Score: 0
CincyTwist , attached to 2014-07-18 Permalink
CincyTwist Late review I know, but I just got home from work and have some free time so I thought I'd give it a go.

The first ever 555 opener definitely had the crowd going, though it is clear that the boys are still trying to figure out where this one belongs in the set (but I feel a type ii version isn't horribly far off).

By the time Reba came around and I noticed how well Trey was nailing the composed section, I turned to my friend who was joining me for his first show and told him that this was a sign that we were in for a great night. We spent a good portion of the remainder of the first set trying to meet up with some guys that we had shared a cab ride to the venue that were trying to get us into the floor, but to no avail. Oh well.

Being on the rail of the lawn during the jam out of Golden Age was pretty great too, especially watching CK5's bubbly lighting effects! Though not quite on par with the two monster versions of Fall 2013, this GA closed out with some ambient effects that created a lot of stratospheric space, driven by Fish similar to the '13 Hampton version. The > into the Mango Song mini-bustout couldn't have made me happier. The Piper -> Halley's will probably be forever debated as one of biggest ripcords or most spontaneous segues of 3.0, but warrants multiple listens either way.

Wombat. That's really the most intelligible thing I can say regarding this subject compared to some of the other reviews, but when I realized that Trey was taking this marsupial in the type ii direction I pretty much lost my shit. As a self-proclaimed noob, I was pretty excited to be witness to the first jammed-out version of the funkiest, arguably Phish-iest track off of Fuego. The bomb dropped by Mike in this jam is probably the most earth-shattering since the Randall's Carini - though not quite on the same level.

The remainder of the set was definitely a cool-down, but was fun nonetheless, with a Page-erific Julius to send us home on the train back to Waukegan.
Score: 0
solargarlic78 , attached to 2014-07-27 Permalink

Throwback Throwdown: Review 7/27/14

What can I say. This amazing band, in their 31st year, still can play a show like last night that just completely knocks you on the floor in shocking disbelief. Part of Phish fandom is of course “knowing” what comes next: “Hey, they’re playing ‘Oh Kee Pah’ so I bet it goes into ‘Suzy’”, or, “They played ‘Mike’s’ so we’ll get ‘Weekapaug’ later.” Or even, “We are due for an ‘Antelope’ tonight.” What is so amazing about Phish is how they sometimes (it has to be rare to create this ‘knowing’ feeling in the first place) completely defy what “should” happen next. One of my favorite moments at a show where I witnessed this was 8/14/97 Darien Lake: Ken Kesey and his “Merry Pranksters” Bozo show got Phish into such a funk groove that they failed to go into “Mockingbird” out of “Colonel Forbins” because, as Trey exclaimed, “We can’t!!! The funk is too deep.” I remember laughing hysterically at that line. Just like I was laughing hysterically during much of the set II last night (by some miracle of summer travel plans I picked CMAC — a hometown show — and MPP2 — where my brother lives — as the two shows I could afford this summer…so lucky me was there last night). We don’t often appreciate that aspect of Phish — sure the jams take us to “places”, and the songs make us dance, etc., but sometimes this band just makes us laugh…a lot.

When Fishman kicked in the “Back on the Train” beat and Trey followed suit, literally seconds into the 3rd quarter Tweezer jam we were all anticipating, I was really pissed (I literally screamed “no” in a fit of rage…I regret that now). I was thinking: OK — these segues are cute and all, but for f*ck’s sake please don’t interrupt my second set “Tweezer.” But, this was my “knowing” Phish brain. Since they had ended the song, “Back on the Train” would do its thing and then we would likely be led down a march of more and more songs (and segues) for the rest of the set. When literally seconds (or maybe a minute) after that, they busted back into “Tweezer,” I first laughed, but then realized how this minor gesture really opened up the realm of what is possible at a Phish show. Suddenly the Tweezer jam could come after “Back on the Train” (which it did — for 9 minutes of melodic bliss hose; add that to the previous two “Tweezers” and we have a respectable 15 minute “version”). But once they did that, anything was possible. No formula existed anymore. “Free” — a song that has remained almost exactly the same since Billy Breathes was released (remember those ‘95 versions that jammed out ? So do I) — was suddenly cut off in the middle for more “Tweezer” — and then “Simple”, but what was the real icing on the cake is that they came back and finished “Free” proper. That non-Tweezer moment might have been my favorite moment of the set (somehow it didn’t feel right to leave that “Free” unfinished— and I generally don’t like “Free”!).

Although it appears the reaction to this show is almost universally positive, I’m sure there must be some corners of the internet who see 20 tracks on a set 2 list and dismiss the show as a ‘cute’ and ‘gimmicky’ segue-fest — but lacking any real serious improvisation (“I need my four song second set, brah!”). If only that were the case. The set not only included a sizable “Tweezer” jam, but also a ridiculously thick groove in the “DWD” that segued beautiful into what is apparently now a late set 2 song of “NICU.” Then that proceeded to jam “type II” for the first time in nearly 20 years. Yes, there were now epic long jams, but once again, Phish — with rapid efficiency — was able to create very interesting ‘out there’ moments in the interstices of the (many) songs.

Everyone is comparing this show to 5/7/94 (Bomb Factory), or other segue-fests (2/20/93 or 6/22/94), but what people haven’t brought up is the dramatic difference in Phish’s jamming style these days (when compared to 1993-1994). As many have noted (@waxbanks and @phishcrit), Phish’s jamming back then was difficult/abstract/frenetic — featuring constant key and tempo changes and dissonant melodies (see A Live One’s Tweezer for instance)— even if they did hold to capacity to build anthemic rock peak jams that strayed away from this sometimes hard-t0-listen-to ‘spontaneous’ composition style. But, this Phish is a different animal. Since 1997, the band still has not really changed their improvisational approach in type II jams (there of course really importance differences in the years since then, I realize). As @waxbanks describes in A Tiny Space to Move and Breathe in 1997 Phish jams become much more open, free, and, most importantly, groove based (Phish tried to play funk prior to 1997 but it didn’t quite work). James Brown and Miles Davis’s electric music, etc. now represented the roots of their jamming style. So, last night, in between the Tweezers and slew of other songs, we got ridiculously open/free harmonically simple jams like Tweezer and funk-groove based jams in Simple, DWD, NICU, and (don’t forget that) Booggie On.

My point is: this is a very different band than the 1994 Phish. I personally much prefer their jamming style today (and I agree the band has found another peak period in 2012-present — even if we can argue if it is on the same level as their previous peaks in 1995 and 1997-1999). But, to ‘add in’ the crazy, unexpected, and hilarious segues and antics (common to 1994) to this Phish’s improvisational gusto and experience? Well, it’s a bit overwhelmingly awesome. And it makes sense. The roots might be something like the “Theme from the Shaft” in Worcester, but in 2013 for the most part Phish anchored their shows with epic improvisations rather than song selection/placement and “setlist flow.” There was a potential to create a new kind of rut of “knowing what to expect” (“it’s the 3rd quarter, so I will now get my awesome jam.”) They decided to shake it up, because, most of all, they just don’t seem complacent right now (like I would argue they had seemed in much of 2009-2011). Now, with fresh song placements and creative segues, Phish is once again keeping us on our toes.

I guess I was going to write a review of the show. The first set was just what I was looking for. “Fee” used to be Phish’s “pop” song when I was in High School — it’s really amazing how rare it is now. I must admit when Trey decided to end the Fee harmonic outro jam section to correct his missed lyric I was confused and angered (not as bad as the “Back on the Train” moment, but still). I love “Fee” jams — 7/1/12 was one of my favorite jams of the year. Sure, correct the lyric, but keep the jam going! When I checked my zzyzx stats before the show, I was informed that the two most common songs I’ve never seen live (in 74 shows), were “My Sweet One” and “The Curtain With.” Well, done and done. Seriously though, I have been chasing “The Curtain With” since 2000 (I got one of the rare “withouts” on 8/28/12, but was rewarded with a >Peaches). This version had a hiccup in the very first part of the intro (the transition between the hammer on’s and the first open “slave-like” A-chord), but then was very, very well played. The jam really chilled out at the beginning and there was a lot of space for Page, Mike and Trey to work. It hit a nice peak, but then felt like it ended a bit abruptly — but no matter — I got my “with” man! Don’t overlook the “Sand” from the first set. It really established a textured groove and was not just a simple guitar solo per usual (the groove it created was a sign of things to come in the second set!). The return of “YEM” was exhilirating, and I really love a first set YEM. While Trey didn’t completely fall apart in the (very difficult!) intro like SPAC, there was a minor flub — but, once again, this was made up for by a cool Mike-Trey duel jam that kept things funky and conversational.

Then, well, the second set happened. And, it had me laughing, laughing, fall apart. I love this band.
Score: 3
OldBalls , attached to 2014-07-27 Permalink
OldBalls Some Phish shows are considered good because the band does something that folks don't expect. Maybe a song traditionally played in the second set makes its way into the first or a jam happens in a song typically not known for exploration by the band. Others are good because the show contains a rare gem that many have been chasing over the years. Still others are considered good because one can just tell that the band is having a whole lotta fun and it's phucking contagious. July 27, 2014 was a rare spectacle in which all of these things that alone could make for an awesome show blended into what can only be classified as a GREAT show.

A sweet mix in the first set of new and old with a Sand in the middle and YEM in the end that foreshadowed what was to come in the second.

The Tweezer blend that ensued was nothing short of spectacular - something that I feel fans will be talking about the rest of the summer and into fall - perhaps longer. Jennifer Dances and I Been Around - WHAT?! You couldn't have seen that coming with the Aricebo telescope.

Between the second set and encore, a younger guy, who had been touring for the past couple of years, asked me how many shows I had seen over the years. While I have been going to see Phish since 1990, I honestly do not know. I took a stab on the order of 50 or so. His reason for asking though was because, like me, he was blown away and he wanted to know if I had ever seen a set like that before. Honestly, no.
If MPPII set II is the new prototype of second sets to come, get ready and maybe, if you can, buy your tickets to Colorado now! This is good stuff and is on par with anything that I have seen - recency effect aside. I am really hoping for more of the same, so more folks can get a taste of the Phish that shocked and persuaded my soul to ignite. Keep it guys! This is the stuff.
Score: 1
VTphisherman , attached to 2014-07-26 Permalink
This was a VERY GOOD show. Moments of absolute brilliance in both sets.

First set: Intensity and crisp improvisation within the confines of first-set brevity. Sample, Moma, Wombat, Number Line were so good, I was thinking best first set of the tour at that point. Then a clean Wedge, which is only a let down for me because I was at the Chicago show a week before and it mad me miss that one. Wolfman's ended with a great jam. A brief (and needed) intermission with Nellie and Lawn Boy. The set built beautifully from there with a solid Line a good Stash jam and then into Suzy to finish with a bang. Page definitely got the crowd going on that one. I would argue this was top 3 first sets of the tour so far.

Second set started with a Carini jam that was interesting, but never seemed to quite settle on anything. What Carini lacked in organized jamming, Ghost delivered and then some. I have heard from some fans who think Trey's 70s-esque powerchord riffs are getting stale, but I beg to differ - this one was fun and got the crowd going. A highlight of the show to be sure. Trey cut it off during the bring back and shifted to Steam, which was a perfect song choice. Mango is always a hit for me. Sing Monica was well-played, but it is not my favorite. Light was very good, but I have heard so many A+++ versions of it over the past year that I think my bar is too high. Hood was good, but again I have heard so many great versions recently that I am spoiled. Then a familiar Julius encore.

Again, all in all a VERY GOOD show - definitely worth another listen for the first set funk and second set Carini, Ghost, Steam. There is no such thing as a bad show these days, so it really is hard not to give 5/5.
Score: 2
lizardneck , attached to 2014-07-27 Permalink
lizardneck I heard it again....and back on the simple freezer train was....FUEGO!
I had as much fun as any show from the 90's, so glad I made it down this weekend. This may be my last show till NYE, and I took full advantage of every moment of music,
Thank you......
Score: 2
madsunrises , attached to 2014-07-27 Permalink
What can I say? They killed it. I couldn't stop dancing, I thought I'd be able to stop and catch my breath at some point in the second set, but they kept building it up like a well organized orgasm and I wouldn't have been satisfied unless I danced to it all and don't worry, I did. It was a contagious show and an absolute joy. It felt so personal and fun, from jumping on trampolines to having Jon come out to sing Jennifer Dances, to dancing off stage in step; it was such a joyous and groovy night. But most importantly, tweezerfest people. I feel honored to have been there.
Score: 2
JorgeCavos , attached to 2014-07-27 Permalink
I couldn't be happier about this show. Everyone else has pretty much said all that has to be said. This was quintessential Phish doing what they do best: Making us dance, laugh, and smile ear-to-ear.

What a beautiful way to cap off my summer (and 80th show!)

Already can't wait for Vegas...
Score: 2
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